Light at end of recession tunnel

Economic figures indicate a moderation in declines across many sectors of the local economy, sparking confidence that better days are ahead.

And Berry Everitt, MD of the Chas Everitt International property group, says greater confidence in sectors such as manufacturing is being matched by growing confidence in the local property market.

“We have seen increased activity among consumers in the property sector recently and many of our agents countrywide are reporting an uptick in successful bond applications and, consequently, a greater proportion of transactions concluded.”

Other good news for consumers includes figures that show price increases in the retail sector slowed significantly in the third quarter of the year, and while pressure on prices may weigh on retailer confidence because of lower profitability, it brings relief for consumers, Everitt adds.

“Slower price increases have, on the other hand, stimulated consumption and for the first time in nearly two years retailers are expecting sales volumes to increase in the current quarter.

“Average hours worked – especially among factory workers - are also increasing, while widespread wage increases combined with interest rate decreases have improved consumers’ buying power. All this is good news for the property market in that greater demand for goods further stimulates the job market and that people with better-paying jobs are more likely to start building wealth by investing in property, either for own use or as an investment vehicle.

“And, of course, banks’ more relaxed approach to granting bonds is likely to materially affect consumers’ buying decisions – adding impetus to demand and hopefully a return to value growth.”

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